Elevated levels of peripheral-blood, naturally occurring aliphatic polyamines in bronchial asthmatic patients with active symptoms

Allergy. 1992 Dec;47(6):638-43. doi: 10.1111/j.1398-9995.1992.tb02388.x.


The levels of peripheral-blood, naturally occurring aliphatic polyamines, such as putrescine, spermidine, and spermine, from 21 bronchial asthmatic patients (11 atopics and 10 nonatopics) were measured by postcolumn derivatization high-performance liquid chromatography analysis. None of the patients, except the 44-year-old woman in the case report below, were given prednisolone, and they were instructed to take only regular medication during the tests. Blood was drawn from the patients in a fasting state, and the polyamine levels were compared between the times when they were free of asthmatic symptoms and when they had mild spontaneous attacks. Nine (5 atopics and 4 nonatopics), 6 (3 atopics and 3 nonatopics), and 4 (3 atopics and 1 nonatopic) out of 20 patients, when they had relatively mild asthmatic attacks, showed higher putrescine, spermidine, and spermine levels, respectively, than those of normal healthy control subjects. The levels of peripheral blood polyamines from a 44-year-old atopic bronchial asthmatic woman, who was admitted to the hospital with severe asthmatic attacks, were measured serially, and the putrescine and spermidine levels were found to be elevated during the asthmatic attacks, returning to normal levels in parallel with the clinical course. These data may suggest a role for naturally occurring aliphatic polyamines in bronchial asthma.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Asthma / blood*
  • Chromatography, High Pressure Liquid
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Polyamines / blood*
  • Putrescine / blood
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Spermidine / blood


  • Polyamines
  • Spermidine
  • Putrescine